THE PRESIDENT of La Salle University said yesterday that he will step down in May 2014 after 15 years, to allow the school to transition into a new era of leadership.

Michael McGinniss, 65, known as "Brother Mike," grew up in Olney and graduated from La Salle in 1970. He has a Ph.D. from Notre Dame and has headed La Salle since 1999. Under his three terms, the Logan-based Catholic institution nearly doubled its endowment, increased its enrollment and expanded its footprint in the northern part of the city.

McGinniss told the Daily News that although he is in good health, 19 years as president of a university - including four at Christian Brothers University in Memphis, Tenn. - "adds a lot of time on your biological clock."

McGinniss said he plans to take a sabbatical before deciding if he will return in a teaching position.

The university will begin the search for its next president this summer.